Alcohol detoxification is crucial but demanding, which is why nowadays, many people try to “simplify” the process by drinking detox beverages.
What are these beverages, and do alcohol detox drinks work?
You’ll find out below.
What is a Detox Drink?
Detox drinks are widely available, and they’re dubbed effective for filtering out toxins and harmful substances out of the body. Infused with herbs, fruits, and other natural ingredients, detox drinks have become a popular way for people to “refresh” their system. Their popularity increased with the rise of social media and influencers who promote these beverages.
Alcohol detox drinks are, essentially, drinkable recipes that enable the body to eliminate alcohol. Options are endless nowadays. Store-bought and homemade detox drinks are widely popular, and they’re all created with the same premise – to eliminate alcohol out of the system in a natural and safe way.
A common belief is that if you drink these beverages regularly, you can “free” your body from alcohol and avoid the need for medically-assisted detox in alcohol addiction treatment facility.
Ingredients Used in Detox Drinks
Detox drinks work by helping the body flush out the toxins and substances such as alcohol, while also supporting the immune system and general health. That’s what we’re usually told, but you need to keep in mind the body is perfectly capable of detoxifying itself. It does so through multiple mechanisms, including digestion, skin (perspiration), kidneys, and liver, of course.
Manufacturers of detox drinks promise their products to deliver natural ingredients that support the body’s own detoxification functions. Every brand says their product is the best alcohol detox drink, but they’re more or less the same.
The most common alcohol detox food and drink ingredients are listed below.
Apple Cider Vinegar
Apple cider vinegar is a popular home remedy, a kitchen staple, and a common ingredient in many detox products. The truth is that apple cider vinegar is incredibly healthy thanks to compounds that come with antimicrobial and antioxidant effects. Evidence shows that apple cider vinegar can exhibit protective effects against kidney and liver oxidative injury. That way, this remedy could help support their functions. Benefits of apple cider vinegar are due to the acetic acid, probiotics, and enzymes that promote healthy digestion, faster metabolism, and fight acid reflux.
Lemon and Lime
Citrus fruits such as lemon and lime are popular ingredients in detox drinks due to the high level of ascorbic acid or vitamin C. This important vitamin strengthens the immune system and supports detoxification. Lemon and lime also induce refreshing and reenergized effects.
Beets are abundant in essential vitamins, minerals, and plant compounds with numerous health benefits. Not only do they give a dash of color to detox drinks, but they also support detoxification. Beetroot has anti-inflammatory and antioxidant effects and increases the activity of detoxifying enzymes.
Watermelon is a staple summer food, and it also happens to be a common ingredient in detox drinks, especially homemade kinds. The reason why people use watermelon is that it’s high in water content. By making you urinate more often, it’s presumed to help flush out toxins, in this case, alcohol. Watermelon is also a rich source of antioxidant lycopene that may combat oxidative stress. As you’re already aware, alcohol induces oxidative stress in the body.
Besides the above-mentioned ingredients, commercially produced or homemade alcohol detox drinks may also include the following:
- Ginger – features antioxidant and anti-inflammatory agents
- Dandelion – promotes the production of urine, acts as a natural laxative, supports digestion
- Aloe vera gel – features laxative and anti-inflammatory properties, normalizes pH balance, boosts the immune system
Berries, mangos, coconut water, parsley, and other fruits, vegetables, and herbs are also added to detox drinks. The premise is the same – they feature antioxidants that combat oxidative stress and also support digestion and immune system.
Common Detox Drinks
Buying detox drinks in stores or online is easy, but many people also make them at home. Some of the most popular detox drink recipes are:
Ultimate Hangover Cure Smoothie
- Coconut water – 2 cups
- Greens (kale or spinach) – 1 cup
- Blueberries – ½ cup
- Celery – 1 stalk
- Beet – 1
- Apple – 1
- Chia seeds – 1tbsp
- Honey – 1tbsp
- Ginger (grated) – 1tbsp
- Ice cubes – 2-3
The process is easy, just combine and mix. This detox drink is believed to help the liver metabolize alcohol faster, boost immunity, and alleviate headaches.
- Avocado – ½
- Beet – 1
- Apple – 1
- Cacao powder – 1tbsp
- Ginger (grated) – 1tbsp
- Honey – 1tbsp
The smoothie is dubbed effective for helping the liver process alcohol but also replenishes potassium and fiber.
- Watermelon – 1-2 cups
- Strawberries – ¾ cup
- Raspberries – ¼ cup
- Fresh lime juice – 2tsp
Watermelon smoothie promotes hydration and also delivers high levels of vitamins A, C, and B6.
Liver Detox Drink
- Oranges (peeled) – 2
- Lemon (peeled) – 1
- Parsley – ½ cup
- Dandelion greens – ½ cup
- Celery – half rib
This detox drink has diuretic properties to remove toxins through the urinary tract.
A Useful Thing to Remember
Fruits, vegetables, and herbs are a major component of a healthy diet due to their nutritional content. They supply the body with many vitamins, minerals, and other compounds to promote general health and wellbeing, decrease the risk of diseases, manage some conditions; you name it.
While some studies do confirm that many of these fruits and vegetables can support activities of detoxifying enzymes, the effectiveness of detox drinks is still a subject of debate, especially commercially-produced beverages. The true effectiveness of detox purposes is still unknown, and even if there is any efficacy, it’s not enough for men and women with heavy long-term alcohol consumption.
More research on this topic is necessary, but no drink is guaranteed to help the body eliminate alcohol.
Are Detox Drinks Safe?
At this point, no scientific evidence confirms that alcohol detox drinks work or that they are enough to eliminate alcohol out of the body to get on the road to recovery.
The premise behind alcohol detox drinks may seem easy and simple, but they aren’t the best choices for people who want to quit alcohol and preserve their health. Besides dubious effectiveness, these drinks also carry safety concerns.
The National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health reports that FDA and FTC (Federal Trade Commission) has taken action against several companies selling detox products. These products contained illegal and potentially harmful ingredients. The companies made false claims when they marketed those products.
Additionally, some detox drinks haven’t been pasteurized and treated in a way to kill bacteria. As a result, they can make people sick.
Some detox drinks contain high levels of oxalates, which could increase the risk of kidney problems.
Moreover, many detox products and drinks contain laxatives and may cause diarrhea, followed by dehydration.
The whole detox market is not well-regulated, so you don’t know exactly what you’re buying.
Let’s not forget that the body has its own detox system, your liver, and kidneys, so keeping them healthy is crucial for the elimination of toxins. In order to make it happen, you need to stop drinking and get into a program at a residential addiction treatment center.
A Healthier Way of Eliminating Alcohol Toxins in the Body
The reality is that we’re swamped with products that claim you can eliminate alcohol out of the body easily. Science doesn’t support that notion. Whether commercially-produced or homemade, alcohol detox drinks aren’t considered effective. In fact, they may induce numerous problems, including some nutritional deficiencies, dehydration. Many products contain hidden and potentially dangerous ingredients.
Even in the presence of certain effectiveness, it’s not enough for someone who drinks a lot.
Drinking alcohol detox drinks isn’t the best way to start the road to recovery, and it most likely won’t help you live an alcohol-free life.
Getting proper help in the form of medical detox for alcohol is crucial.
Proper help means entering the alcohol addiction treatment program at an inpatient alcohol rehab in Texas, like Stonegate Center, located just west of Fort Worth, where you go through supervised detox. In this case, detox is effective, safe, and sets a solid foundation for addiction treatment.
The reason why this approach is the best is that you go through the process with a team of addiction specialists who take care of you, prescribe medications if necessary, and oversee every step of the detox and treatment. A substance abuse treatment center near Fort Worth provides a structure that you need when trying to overcome alcohol use.
On the flip side, detox drinks have no effectiveness, especially in people with alcohol use disorder.
In this post, we addressed a common subject – the use of alcohol detox drinks. These drinks have become popular, although science doesn’t support them, and they carry more risks than benefits. Getting adequate treatment at an alcohol detox center in DFW is the best way to overcome alcohol addiction and start a healthier and happier life.
Are You Struggling With Alcoholism?
If you’re struggling with alcohol abuse or alcoholism, our team at Stonegate Center, a drug and alcohol treatment center in Azle, Texas, is here to help!
Our gender-separate and faith-based program offers some of the best medical, clinical, and spiritual care for individuals struggling with substance use disorders. Plus, our longer-term programs (i.e. 45-day program, 60-day program, and 90-day program) provide a higher probability of success than the brief 30-day approach.
While on our 125+ acre campus, you’ll be involved in individual therapy, group therapy, recreational therapy, and equine therapy in order to help heal the underlying wounds of addiction. Likewise, you’ll be automatically enrolled in our Alumni Program, in which we invite our clients to paintball events, camping adventures, and our annual crawfish boil.
So, if you’re struggling with alcohol abuse or alcoholism, give us a call at (817) 993-9733 or email us at email@example.com. Or fill out our insurance verification form for a 100% confidential and transparent quote.
Most of our clients use some form of commercial health insurance like Blue Cross Blue Shield (BCBS), Cigna, Aetna, UnitedHealthcare, Ambetter, HealthChoice of Oklahoma, and others to help lower the out-of-pocket cost of treatment. Please note, at this time, we do not take Medicaid, Medicare, or Tricare; however, we’d be happy to refer you to one of our partners who does.
We look forward to meeting you and having you a part of our recovery community!
John Eckelbarger is a Business Development Representative for Stonegate Center. With a BSA in Chemistry from the University of Texas at Austin, he has an interest in the neurobiology of addiction & pharmacology of drugs. He hopes to bolster Stonegate Center to the forefront of addiction medicine through bold, innovative content. He is currently pursuing his MBA in Finance from Texas Christian University.